Friday, January 21, 2011

Document shows that, after arena naming rights agreement was signed, it was amended twice, in 2008 and 2009

Thanks to an agreement (embedded below) between Barclays Capital and the Bank of New York Mellon, we have confirmation that indicated the arena naming rights agreement was negotiated not just from a reported $400 million in 2007 to $200 million-plus in 2009, but also with some unspecified interim amendments in 2008.

(Note how arena renderings now prominently feature advertising on and around the building, though earlier renderings, below, did not. Does that meet design guidelines? The ESDC was vague.)

The agreement concerns, among other things, the role of the naming rights fee in paying off bondholders, via PILOTs (payments in lieu of taxes). It does not specify the value of naming rights agreement. The state simply gave away naming rights to Forest City Ratner, which marketed them to Barclays.

The bank is the trustee for the PILOTs; the document was found via ACRIS, the city's property database.

Amendments in 2008 and 2009

The key text begins on the bottom of page 11 of the document. It indicates that Brooklyn Arena LLC, an affiliate of the Brooklyn Events Center building the arena, entered in a naming rights agreement dated 1/17/07, which was amended 11/4/08, and then amended again on 8/3/09.

Of course, after the first amendment in 2008, after the stock market crashed, Barclays stated in a press release that it was "unwavering" in its commitment to the Barclays Center.

As I wrote, we weren't told whether that commitment included a renegotiation of terms.

Most likely it did. After all, the agreement itself was not "unwavering."
Barclays PILOT Agreement

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